Jury awards $3.2 million to ex-Tapout employee

source: bhcourier.com

A former Tapout sales representative who filed suit over a wage dispute with the action sportswear company was today awarded $2.4 million in punitive damages by a Los Angeles Superior Court jury.

The panel deliberated for about a half-hour before finding in favor of Michelle Thomas in her wrongful termination case. The same panel on Monday awarded her $840,000 in compensatory damages, bringing her total award to more than $3.2 million.

Thomas, a 32-year-old trade show model from San Pedro, wept when she heard Monday's verdict and today was "overwhelmed," said her lawyer, Carney R. Shegerian.

"We're very happy and pleased that the jury saw through all the (TapouT) smoke and mirrors," Shegerian said.

The punitive damages phase was triggered when the panel concluded that TapouT acted with malice toward Thomas, who filed her suit in October 2008.

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Recent Comments »

ZombieProphet site profile image  

1/29/11 1:52 AM by ZombieProphet

fucking sad! i get crippled by some asshole doctor and they offered me only $25,000!

Str4nger D4nger site profile image  

1/29/11 1:52 AM by Str4nger D4nger

Who the fuck came up with that number!?! Why was I not born a hot chick!?! I go to a job I hate every damn day and work my ass off so that I'm not able to sue for that kind of gravy!?! That's it I'm gonna burn this country to the ground... Somebody hand me my arson lighter...

Oldboy site profile image  

1/29/11 1:36 AM by Oldboy

Then we can deduce that jurors are fucking retarded.

UpWithEvil site profile image  

1/28/11 2:44 PM by UpWithEvil

Well sure you would, but your ass looks like someone blasted a side of beef with a shotgun at point blank range.  

OneSidedWar site profile image  

1/28/11 1:04 PM by OneSidedWar

crack whore

likatiga site profile image  

1/28/11 11:23 AM by likatiga

These are all very valid points, with the exception of the Mask stuff. With all due respect, it's irrelevant what he did to build the company, how much his estate is worth, etc.You and I are in the same business, I am a UPM for major films. It's my job to make sure the company is toeing the line and following the labor rules. If I take a unit to China or India (I have done both), I follow the California labor laws, to avoid even the potential for litigation. The studios (the corporation) hires me specifically to keep them safe.It is the responsibility of the management of the corporation to avoid these types of lawsuits, to say otherwise is a cop out.Is the judgement too high? Sure, this person does not deserve this amount. What amount do you need to penalize a corporation to make sure they behave according to the rules of business? This jury thought it was 3.2M.

Owned Entertainment site profile image  

1/28/11 4:00 AM by Owned Entertainment

I'm not saying she didn't have a case or is not entitled to what she was offered but $3.2 million! According to Mask's case his 28% of the company was worth $6 million of TapouT (or roughly that) So if that's the case, $3.2 million is a HUGE chunk of the company value. Do you not think that has a chilling effect on business? If YOU own a business would you want to hire a ton of people if judgments like this come down so easily? Everything is cause and effect. If you have huge judgements against companies they will think twice about hiring more people. California already has a non adjusted unemployment rate of 12.5%. There is no doubt that people's self "entitlement" has contributed to this. The state of California is going broke, partly because it can not pay inflated wages it has contracted into. There is not enough money for everyone to live like Brittney Spears in America. Personally I hire people both in Canada and America and would pay people fair for their work, no problem. But I would be less likely to hire Americans if I feared that it is such a litigious society I could risk my entire business in doing so. Law of unintended consequences. And to those who complain about companies that hire cheaper labor in other counties are often the first to shop at Wal Mart and look for the cheapest price on a good. If consumers price shop how can they blame companies for price shopping? And btw when you are buying cheap goods from China you are basically voting with your wallets. If you can buy a product for cheaper at Wal Mart than a mom and pop shop, where are you going to buy from? Now add in that if you shop at the mom and pop shop there is a large chance that they may sue you if you bump into any merchandise in the store and would get a large court judgement against you. Where are you going to shop? My guess is you will buy the cheaper China made item at Wal Mart. Employees think the same way as buyers. RISK = fear. Fear stops people from taking action. Action like starting new businesses or hiring more people.  And BTW how many YEARS did Mask put in without pay??  And she is entitled to more than HALF what Mask's estate got?  Some girl who was stiffed for some overtime is now entitled to get over half what the guy got who not only INVENTED the brand but who worked year after year for no pay to build it into a company that could afford to have empoyees?  Mask was a unique individual with special skills that made something happen.  This girl's job could probably be done by a million different people.  And after 8 months she is worth more than half of what Mask's estate got from TapouT sale?   

SgtJustinTeplitz site profile image  

1/28/11 12:00 AM by SgtJustinTeplitz

As horrible as that was, lol, I would do that 20 hours a day, 7 days a week for 8 months for 100K.What a bs lawsuit and bs verdict.

SgtJustinTeplitz site profile image  

1/27/11 11:58 PM by SgtJustinTeplitz

I would take this job even if they raped me every shift all shift